May 20, 2011
I’ve been thinking a lot about the concept of common grace over the last twelve hours. Common grace is the idea that there are glimpses of God revealed throughout all humanity. It’s a big deal at L’Abri. It decreases the divide between what is sacred and what is secular. We see glimpses of God’s beauty and intellect in the works of William Shakespeare, Flannery O’Connor and J. R. R. Tolkein. We see glimpses of God’s beauty and creativity in the music of Bach, Mozart and Debussy. We see glimpses of God’s beauty and creativity in the art of Monet, and in the photography of Ansel Adams. The brilliant surgeon. The teacher who has a special ability to teach dyslexic children. The nurse who has a way with alzheimers patients. The chemist who discovers a drug that changes the game.
Today, I’m particularly thankful for that spark of God in Alexander Fleming, who discovered penicillin. I sat in urgent care last night for two hours thinking about this concept of common grace. I have an infected leg from a bug bite two days ago. I’m thankful and grateful for antibiotics. I hate taking them, and I rarely do. But, today, I’m grateful.
I’m also mindful of God’s dominion. I had a jam-packed day planned today, and God is slowing me down. I’ll now be in bed all day with my leg elevated.
So, there it is. One of the things that I hate is the “us versus them” attitude that occurs in some sects of Christianity. Common grace lowers those walls. It honors the fact that we’re all made in the image of God. We all have sparks of God’s beauty and brilliance and creativity.